The Cheltenham Festival remains one of the best events for horse racing fans every year. With its total prize fund the best in the country, along with the Grand National meeting, the festival is one of the most highly regarded on the National Hunt calendar.
The festival which is scheduled for Tuesday 16th to Friday, 19th of March 2021, is huge on the betting markets. Months in advance fans and punters begin scouring the various sites for the best betting odds like Sportsbet.
However, with the meeting so far away, selecting not only who will win a given race, but who will actually run in it, is a tricky process. Even then you still have to consider which potential runners will be fit and ready at the time.
So in order to give yourself a good shot at picking a winner, it can be worth following trainers on social media. That way you get to what they are up to, who they really fancy in their yard and how the preparations are going.
As there are so many factors to take into consideration, it helps to follow horse racing news. This can provide relevant information on runners and ante-post markets. You can also register for official tickets and sign up for newsletters relating to the Cheltenham Festival as the meeting draws closer.
So with that in mind, we have also been looking at who we think could run a solid race next year.
Abacadabras – Champion Hurdle
Owned by Gigginstown, Abacadabras just missed out on the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at the 2020 Festival. He was pipped to the post and beaten by a head by Shishkin in a close-run contest.
Gordon Elliott’s horse didn’t have the greatest start but made his way into contention before his narrow defeat on the run-in. Nevertheless, he managed to pull eleven lengths clear of Chantry House in 3rd place which is impressive!
Looking likely to head to the Champion Hurdle in 2021, he will still have some stiff competition. That said, it’s worth considering a sneaky bet on Abacadabras to emerge the winner espeically with his current odds of around 10/1.
Champ – Gold Cup
The Irish trained runner, Al Boum Photo, is certainly a contender for another coveted Gold Cup win, his third in three years. Best Mate, who died in November 2005, was the last horse to achieve that feat in 2004.
However, trainer Willie Mullins may have a fight on his hands if he’s hoping to retain the title. Champ, trained by Nicky Henderson, seems to be a worthy competitor, especially with how well he performed to win the RSA Novices’ Chase earlier this year.
Champ’s jumping has to be improved, but with odds around 14/1, he looks too great to be ignored.
Defi Du Seuil – Ryanair Chase
While many expected Defi De Seuil to win the Champion Chase in 2020, he ended up in fourth place after Politologue. It wasn’t just a shock to fans, but also to his trainer, Philip Hobbs, who could offer no explanation for his poor performance.
Despite his 100% win rate in the season leading up to the race, Defi Du Seuil performed below par. But maybe a comeback is on the cards. When he heads to the Cheltenham Festival next year, connections may opt for the Ryanair Chase. It’s slightly longer with five additional furlongs, but it could be a good pick for the chaser.
By no means the favourite for it, Defi Du Seuil still looks like a good candidate to emerge a winner. With odds of about 16/1, he also looks like a good bet to consider.